Homemade Paneer | How to make Indian Cottage Cheese

Diwali is round the corner and I know you all are busy with pre-preparation process. People will indulge in making delicious sweets and snacks for the festival. Today I would like to share the recipe of homemade paneer, one such  versatile ingredient that lends to make delicious sweets and dessert, also idle for making variety of Paneer Recipes ranging from simple gravy to exotic dessert. It is a type of cheese first made in Indian continents and popular known all over the world as Indian Cottage Cheese. 

Paneer is basically made by curdling the milk and it has good source of calcium in it. Once you give a try to make paneer at home, I swear you will never again go for store-bought one. And the whey (the leftover water from curdled milk) can be used for kneading the dough or use just like water to any dish. Even you can reserve the whey(instead of citric acid) in refrigerator for making paneer again at home. Paneer blends easily with any ingredients and that's why many vegetarian food lovers include it regular in their diet.

Cooking Time : under 15 mins.

Preparation / setting time : 3-4 hours

Yield : 15-20 cubes / 1 cup crumbled paneer


Full Cream Milk - 1 ltr
Lemon juice - 1tbsp lemon juice (can be replaced with vinegar or citric acid or beaten curd)


  1. Boil the milk in non stick heavy bottom pan.
  2. Mix lemon juice in half cup of water and slowly add this mixture in boiling milk. stir gently.
  3. The fat or curd will start separating from whey. turn off the heat.
  4. Once the fat has separated completely from whey strain it. Line in a muslin cloth in strainer and strain all mixture in it. Only fat will get collected in muslin cloth. collect the whey/water and use it in cooking rice, making douch etc.
  5. Keep this fat/paneer along with strainer in running water for 1 minute so all the lemon content will wash out from paneer.
  6. Wrap the cloth and press hard and squeeze out all the water from it. Tie the cloth and hand it for 15 mins.
  7. At this stage we will get crumbled paneer. Take it out in a bowl if your recipe called for Crumbled Paneer or Chenna.
  8. Crumbled paneer which is kneaded by hands to a dough like consistency called Channa which is used for preparing sweets/desserts or even for making delicious kofta curries. Few Recipes which calls Chenna/Crumbled paneer are Rasgulla, Rasmalai, Malai Laddo, Kalakand and many more. Also make Paneer Bhurji and stuff it in paratha, sandwich, kachori or paneer balls.
  9. For making Paneer cubes, set it under heavy bottom vessel for 2 hours. I used Pressure Cooker.
  10. Keep it again in fridge for 1 more hour to get firm Paneer. Take it out from cloth and you will get a nice firm block of paneer.
  11. Cut it them in desired shape. I cut them in square cubes. Use it fresh in your recipe.
  12. Or store in a air tight container or zip lock plastic bag and refrigerate it. It can be stored in fridge for 3-4 days. It will be fresh for months if kept frozen. Use this paneer cubes to make Paneer tikka, Palak Paneer, Paneer Butter Masala, Mutter Paneer.


Do not discard the whey/water while straining panner. Whey is as healthy as panner so use it in regular cooking.

You can add spices as per your taste while setting it i.e. black pepper, mint, garlic or add sugar in milk while boiling to get sweet paneer if making it for desserts or sweets.

Colour and quantity may vary with the milk we use like buffalo milk/cows milk, full cream/low fat milk, fresh/ pasteurised milk.

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